The Labor Market and Economic Adjustment


Pierre-Richard Agénor

Publication Date:

November 1, 1995

Disclaimer: This Working Paper should not be reported as representing the views of the IMF.The views expressed in this Working Paper are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent those of the IMF or IMF policy. Working Papers describe research in progress by the author(s) and are published to elicit comments and to further debate


This paper examines the role of the labor market in the transmission process of adjustment policies in developing countries. It begins by reviewing the recent evidence regarding the functioning of these markets. It then studies the implications of wage inertia, nominal contracts, labor market segmentation, and impediments to labor mobility for stabilization policies. The effect of labor market reforms on economic flexibility and the channels through which labor market imperfections alter the effects of structural adjustment measures are discussed next. The last part of the paper identifies a variety of issues that may require further investigation, such as the link between changes in relative wages and the distributional effects of adjustment policies.


Working Paper No. 1995/125



Also published in Staff Papers, Vol. 43, No. 2, June 1996.


Publication Date:

November 1, 1995



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